Landlord lobby slammed over claims on rented home numbers

Rent controls have protected households and families through the cost of living crisis.

A landlord lobby group has been slammed for misleading claims that the number of rented homes is falling.

A survey today (4 March) by the Scottish Association of Landlords claims that 22,000 privately rented properties might have been lost to the sector over the 12 months. 

However, this number is based on self-reporting by a small number of member landlords and then inflated for all of Scotland.

The claim is at stark odds with the official landlord register, which shows the number of registered rented properties in Scotland has actually risen by 1.7% during the period of the emergency rent cap.

Scottish Green MSP Ross Greer said: “It’s a sign of real desperation in the landlord lobby that they are reduced to claims that are at odds with the evidence. 

“Far from falling in number over the last 18 months as claimed, the number of rented properties has actually risen. It may well be that some landlords have taken properties out of renting but that has always been the case. Some come, some go. We need to look at the full picture.

“Over the last two decades, the response from landlord groups has been as predictable as it has been wrong. Each new regulation is greeted with claims that landlords will walk away, but the number of rented homes has grown from 120,000 pre-devolution to over 340,000 today.

“Across Europe, sensible balanced regulations work alongside healthy markets: better for tenants and better for responsible landlords. It would be so much better if landlords in Scotland got this too.”